Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” (Matthew 19:14)
News & Events
2020-2021 School Year
The Hamilton Nursery, which serves our children ages birth-prekindergarten, will be open during our 9:00 am Traditional Service, 10:00 am Sunday School, and 11:00 am Ancient Modern Service. Elementary Sunday School will be from 10:00-10:45 am in the Huddle (Room 240) and Children’s Wing classrooms:
K/1st Grade Boys: Room 256/258
K/1st Grade Girls: Room 260/262
2nd/3rd Grade Boys: Room 259
2nd/3rd Grade Girls: Room 240 (The Huddle)
4th/5th Grade Boys: Room 261
4th/5th Grade Girls: Room 257
We ask that you please pre-register your children online by Friday at noon so that we have adequate staff and volunteers present on Sunday mornings to keep our kids safe. Please go to What’s Going On- Open Registrations.
The Children’s Ministry will continue to send home weekly emails with Sunday School lessons for pre-schoolers and elementary school kids. Please contact Callie Beaver at email@example.com to be added to our email distribution list. Our church services will also continue to be live streamed each week. We encourage all of our families to spend some time together (either at church or at home) in worship and Sunday School every week!
*Please note that some of these dates and types of events may have to change due to social distancing restrictions.*
WOW- Worship on Wednesdays with Kids
(Fall Semester: September 9-November 11; we will not meet October 14
Spring Semester: January 13-March 24; we will not meet March 17)
Our mid-week program which runs during the school year provides a variety of opportunities for children to experience Christian fellowship and develop a closer relationship to Christ. This is our children’s ministry equivalent of “youth group”. Elementary Children will meet at McVay Gardens (inside the OLEC Gym if too cold or raining) from 6:00-7:15 PM. Younger children will be in the Hamilton Nursery. We will be unable to serve dinner and snacks this fall so be sure to eat before you come. Children ages 3 and up will need to bring a mask with them. Please register your children online each week under What’s Going On-Open Registrations. Any questions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Created by God*
(February 26-27, 2021)
Created by God is a program resource designed to communicate to fifth and sixth graders that we are a fantastic creation made by God. The topics of human sexuality, values, and relationships are approached in a frank, honest, and Bible-based manner. This is a Friday night and Saturday morning course for tweens; parental attendance is required for two sessions. There will be a parent meeting in January to answer any questions before registration opens January 27. Click here to register for Created by God.
Easter Egg Hunt*
(April 3, 2021)
We are excited to announce that the GUMC Kids annual Easter Egg Hunt will be held on Saturday, April 3rd at our beautiful McVay Gardens at 9:30am. We want families to feel comfortable coming to the event AND we need to maintain as much social distance as possible during it. In order to do this, we will send out a Signup Genius link to the families in our church. Families will be allowed to sign up for a 45-minute time period to attend the egg hunt. We will have at least 2 separate groups with a limited number of slots during each time period. During your family’s time slot, you will be able to: hunt for eggs, ride the train, go to the petting zoo, complete crafts, play games, etc. We are wanting to offer as many of the normal egg hunt activities as possible! Once the time slot is over, we will ask everyone to exit the area. We will sanitize and prepare for the next group of families to arrive. This year, everyone ages 3 and up will be required to wear a mask at the event. We want to offer the safest event possible. If you have questions about the event, please feel free to contact Natalie Adkinson (email@example.com). This fun and festive event provides photo opportunities galore! Click here to register for GUMC Easter Egg Hunt.
Vacation Bible School 2021*
We are working hard to figure out how we can best offer a safe and fun VBS. At this time, we are hoping on a regular VBS on the following dates. However, we are continuing to monitor COVID numbers and restrictions and may have to adjust to different VBS model, such as a Family VBS like last year or something similar. Stay tuned for details!
Evening VBS Tentative Dates (June 2-4, 2021 5:30-8:00 PM)
This three-day version of VBS has all the fun of the weekday VBS in a condensed form. Dinner will be served at 5:30 followed by story, games, music, and more!
Weekday VBS Tentative Dates (June 7-11, 2021, 9:00 AM- 12:00 PM)
This week is packed full of friends, fun, and the incredible message of God’s love. Registration will open online in April.
Mission Camp for Rising 5th and 6th Graders*
(July 5-9, 2021)
This week of discovery leads children who are entering grades 5 and 6 through a variety of mission opportunities. Children will work in inner-church missions, urban missions, and rural missions. This is a transforming week for children as they taste the types of mission opportunities available and begin deciding where they feel most lead to serve. Online registration opens in May.
(July 25-31, 2021)
“Away Camp” is a life-changing experience for children. We are taking a crew from GUMC to Lakeshore for a week of fun and fellowship. If you are interested in attending this week, please register through Lakeshore’s Website (https://lakeshorecamp.org) and then drop an email to middle school director Lisa Pierce (firstname.lastname@example.org) or elementary director Callie Beaver (email@example.com) so we can coordinate this trip together. Our youth ministry team, Lisa Pierce and Brian Richards, will be staying the week as camp deans of Elementary Camp #4. There is also a Jr. High Camp #3 that same week for any students who have completed grades 5-8 (must be 12 years old). Of course, we will be needing high school counselors who would like to work with us this week! If you have not trained as a Lakeshore counselor but are interested in participating in this way, there is a final counselor training event the weekend of April 9-11, 2021. If you absolutely cannot train this weekend, please contact Lisa Pierce for a potential alternative.
Lakeshore has an abundance of opportunities for all campers; there are a variety of camps offered all summer long! There are camps for people with special needs, as well as camps for people who have suffered traumatic experiences. There is a camp for people who love to fish, a camp for people who love aquatics, a camp for the arts, and a camp for those who love living in the wilderness. There is even a camp for people who love board games! There is a camp for everyone, so go to their website and take a peek.
If you ARE interested in participating the week of July 25, we encourage you to register as soon as possible. This week of camp fills up quickly. Lakeshore has a limited number of available spaces to reduce the risk of Covid spread, so it is essential to register early.
(October 31, 2021)
This church-wide celebration takes place right after worship over at the OLEC. Kids may wear non-scary costumes and enjoy fun activities such as inflatables, face painting, cookie decorating, putt-putt, and other games led by our adult Sunday school classes. Lunch will be available for purchase.
(November 17, 2021)
In preparation for the Advent season, families are invited to attend this special mid-November event geared towards children of all ages. Families can create their own Advent wreath, make a nativity set, and have fun with other Advent crafts. There are light refreshments. This event is free to all and no registration is required.
Journey to Bethlehem*
(December 4, 2021)
Families with young children (and older people who are children at heart) are invited to attend this special GUMC tradition. Children will walk the path of Jesus’ birth. They will begin with the angels, move to Bethlehem for Jesus’ birth, visit the shepherds, and finish with the wise men. After learning the reason we share gifts at Christmas, children will have a chance to share their wish list with the Jolly Ol’ Guy himself. This event is free to all and no registration is required.
Children’s Alternative Christmas*
(December 5, 2021)
On this morning, elementary-aged children will have an opportunity to shop for gifts for family and friends. Each gift is $5, of beautiful quality, wrapped, and tagged. Children will also learn about free-trade and mission-oriented gifts and will learn about being a purposeful giver. Preschool children may shop between worship hours or after church ends. No registration necessary; bring $5 for each gift you intend to purchase.
Ignite!- A Retreat for 4th and 5th Graders*
(This event has been postponed due to COVID restrictions- stay tuned for an update)
4/5 graders travel to a local retreat facility for a one-night retreat with a focus on worship, fellowship, and team building. This weekend is a lot of fun, action packed, and full of growth as we learn to worship in a more meaningful way.
Children’s Music Choir
Dates to be determined
Playing team sports is a wonderful way to build friendships, confidence, and a love for active fun. If your child is interested in team sports, please consult our opportunities offered through our Health and Recreation Ministry at the Owings Life Enrichment Center (OLEC). Contact Judy Oros at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Ways to Join the Children’s Ministry Team
We want you to consider how you can work with us to create a vibrant ministry. There are a number of volunteer opportunities. Please read through these and find a place you feel your talents can best be used. We would love to see all families represented in our ministry. Just like most ministries, you will find you get much more back than you could ever give. Please prayerfully consider your role.
Sunday Morning Kids Quest Mentor: This crucial role is on the front lines of ministry with children. These individuals come each Sunday starting in August, building relationship with the children and sharing the Good News. Mentors use lessons to follow up the main lesson taught in large group. All lessons and materials are provided; you only need to bring a servant’s heart and love for God and children. Men, we need YOU to lead our boy groups. Time requirement includes 1 hour 15 minutes on Sunday morning and about 15 minutes of prep each week. We understand work and travel and will have substitutes for these occasions. Please contact Callie Beaver if you are interested in this role.
Sunday Morning Substitute Teachers: These individuals fill in when our regular Sunday School mentors are not available. All lessons and materials are provided; you only need to bring a servant’s heart and love for God and children. Please contact Callie Beaver if you are interested.
Sunday Morning Stepping Stones Volunteers: These individuals present or assist with the weekly small-group lesson in the preschool classes. After large group time, each group will return to their classroom for the small group lesson. All lessons and materials are provided. Please contact Kristin Dickerson to volunteer for this ministry.
Grace Class Leader: Grace is our class designed for elementary-aged children with special needs. We need teachers for this class as well as shadows to go with children if they chose to enter the Kids Quest program. Volunteers can either serve for one month or once a month for the school year; commitment is about one hour 15 minutes each week. All materials and training are provided. Please contact Natalie Adkinson if you are interested.
Wednesday Night Small Group Leader: These individuals will join us on Wednesday nights for dinner, worship, and small group. We will begin at 5:30 with dinner in the Huddle, move to the chapel for worship, and then break into small groups and games. We will end at 7:15. All lessons and materials are provided. This is a semester commitment running for 10 weeks (excluding fall break and ending at Thanksgiving for the semester). We will resume in January and run up to Palm Sunday. Please contact Callie Beaver if you are interested in helping with this ministry. (If you are not able to make it in time for the dinner, you are welcome to join us at 6:00 for the rest of the evening.)
Wednesday Night Food Prep: These individuals purchase and prepare the meal for Wednesday nights each week. The meals are very “kid-friendly” including favorites such as chicken nuggets, pizza, hot dogs, etc. No big-time cooking is necessary, just heating and serving. Time commitment each week is approximately one hour for purchase of food and two hours for preparing/serving/cleaning up. This job could be divided if multiple people work together. This is also a wonderful way for a Sunday school class to serve. Please contact Callie Beaver if you are interested in serving in this ministry area. Note: We will not be having Wednesday night meals during the 2020-21 school year.
Kids Quest Lesson/Environment Prep Team: Our curriculum has monthly themes which require environment changes and props. This team will develop the environment each month for our theme as well as assemble props for the weekly stories. We also have numerous copies to be made and materials to be gathered for each month’s lessons. This will require about five hours a month and is not a Sunday morning commitment. Please contact Callie Beaver if you are interested in helping in this ministry area.
Special Events Team: This team works seasonally for special events such as Fall Festival, Advent Workshop, Journey to Bethlehem, Easter Egg Hunt, etc. Please contact Callie Beaver if you are interested in this ministry area.
1 Corinthians 10:31 “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
Please prayerfully consider where you can serve in our children’s ministry, doing it all for the glory of God.
The Children’s Ministry is sending home weekly emails with Sunday School lessons for our pre-schoolers and elementary school children. Please contact Callie Beaver if you are not receiving these emails.
There are three main concepts we want children in grades K-5 to understand, and all our lessons are directed towards these ideas. Before graduating our program, we want all children to understand and be able to apply these three biblical truths:
I need to make the wise choice. (Wisdom)
I can trust God no matter what. (Faith)
I should treat others the way I want to be treated. (Friendship)
While every lesson is different, there is an element in each which leads back to these concepts. We want the children to understand the Scriptures are alive and relevant to today. Therefore, our lessons are active, engaging, and hands-on.